There is nothing like being comfy and cozy in our comfort zones. Right? The problem with that is, of course, that we can’t change or grow if we hold on to our comfort zones. As Susan wrote in Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, “Most of us operate within a zone that feels right, and outside of it we are uncomfortable. For each one of us that zone of comfort is different, but whether we are aware of it or not, all of us—rich or poor, famous or unknown, gay or straight, male or female or whatever our gender identity— make decisions based on the confines of that comfortable space.”
While we may feel secure in our comfort zone, we likely are living with the pain of neediness and the fear of change. While comfort zones can make us feel secure, they also keep us from feeling powerful. If we want to grow, to experience, to learn, we have to start moving out of complacency in that comfortable space. We have to start expanding our boundaries. To do so, we have to take action, we have to put in the work—even if it means being uncomfortable. That is the only way we can know our own power.
How about going out for a sail, swim, drink, run, or meet friends, play with your children, talk to your partner – without your head still being full of work-related information? It can be difficult to leave work related thoughts behind at the end of the day. Too many people arrive home and are not really present. Their body might have walked through the door but mentally they are miles away. This seems to be the reality in today's world. Remember: There is more to life than just work. You do need some kind of balance between down-time and work to be the most effective. Clarity will come easier if you give your brain a rest. It is amazing what thoughts, ideas, solutions and insights can come to you by creating some space for them.
This is a common topic with my coaching clients. I might work with five different clients all on this particular topic, yet each one will find his or her own unique way to help themselves unwind and reenter their personal life.
First of all, it helps to remember and accept as an important truth that your work is only part of your life. It is wonderful if you love what you do and have passion for your work, but do not forget that your personal life is at least as important as your work.
The goal is not to neglect your work but also not neglect your family, friends, and self. Establish and maintain a routine of self-care – start by unwinding from work on your way home. Some examples that help my clients include: listening to music or an audiobook in the car or on the train, taking a walk and being more mindful while doing so, meeting a friend, or exercise. Start instilling this habit and you will experience life as more satisfying, rewarding, happy, and healthier in mind and body.
Just as life is constantly changing, the brain is constantly changing. It is through repetition that thinking patterns, and consequently behaviour patterns can be shifted, tweaked, changed or completely replaced with more positive empowering ones. Through repetition the brain rewires itself.
Science has proven the brain can rewire itself. This is fantastic news especially for anybody wishing to improve the quality of their life and engaging the support of a coach for this 'change' process. Making, and more importantly sustaining, any changes in thinking or in behaviour patterns, would be very difficult, if not impossible, without this scientific truth. Knowing this offers coaching clients not only motivation but also confidence to continue on the path to 'change', which sometimes can be a difficult one.
The world will put countless obstacles in your path but none will be as big as the ones you create for yourself
Self-sabotage occurs when your logical, conscious mind (the side of you that says you need to eat healthily and save money) is at odds with your subconscious mind (the side of you that stress-eats chocolate and goes on online shopping binges). The latter is your anti-self -- that critical inner voice that seems to hold you back and sabotage your efforts.
Self-sabotage involves behaviors or thoughts that keep you away from what you desire most in life. It’s that internal sentiment gnawing at us, saying “you can’t do this.” This is really your subconscious trying to protect you, prevent pain and deal with deep-seated fear. But the result of self-sabotage is that we hesitate instead of seizing new challenges. We forgo our dreams and goals. In the end, we know we missed out, but we don’t understand why.
So what can we do to stop the self-limiting behaviors? Here are eight steps you can start taking immediately to stop self-sabotaging your success.
I was standing by the lake one windy morning watching the waves crash up against some rocks and the ripple effect that followed. The wave hit one area and cascaded long the others closer to where I was standing. It was beautiful, full of energy and at the same time made me realize that this can be translated into how one negative thought tends to release a series of more negative ones. This seems to happen to ‘feed’ or confirm the first one. I have found that negative thoughts hate being alone ... they look for company.
In my own personal experience as well working professionally in the arena of personal growth and development, I all too often witness how this unfolds.
I am not a therapist or neuroscientist so cannot speak scientifically. Having said that I have enough evidence after 16 years of working in this area to be able to say the patterns are there.
It strikes me that our minds do not like to give up the negative thoughts. Our brain looks for further thoughts to confirm this 'truth'. The thought might be far from true now in your actual present-day reality, yet we treat it as absolute truth in our thinking. From what I witness these beliefs come from emotions, more often than not emotions from the past, even recent past (last job, last relationship). Our behaviour follows our thinking, so our behaviour will act upon what we think and therefore believe.
For example: If you believe you are not very good at something chances are you will act this way. Instead of taking the approach to learn how to, or improve, you shy away from it.
Of course, the very first step must be being aware of this thought pattern and the resulting behaviour. To make any changes it is vital to be aware of a pattern. If it turns out to be limiting belief that is holding you back this belief is best challenged and reframed. If is is there due to lack of clarity you know to get more clarity.
In order to stay calm and grounded it requires certain behaviours that feed being calm. Each person will have their own requirements. What you as an individual need to feel calm will most likely differ from someone else’s needs. Each has their own interpretation of success as well as what feeling calm and grounded means to them. Based on my own personal experience this also changes depending on our age. I know when I was 30 my focus was very different to 40. At 30 I was focused on creating my family and being a wife and mother. At 50 I noticed that feeling fulfilled was my new goal and turning 60 was fabulous as I had completely grown into my skin by then and was more than happy to focus on my core values and needs. The 'older age' goal is answering the question ‘how do I want this chapter of my life to look and feel’… This one is still work in progress so watch this space.
Tips for what comes next If you find yourself lost in a negative thinking pattern regarding an issue, observe any common denominators that kick the first thought off. What sets those wheels in motion? What happens next? Observe yourself, raise your awareness to your patterns. Is it a recurring situation, a recurring interaction, an issue left unresolved, a lack of clarity? It could be a number of things. Get to know yourself to find out what exactly it is. It is worthwhile to observe what comes next. Which thoughts follow, how do you act, react, behave, or deal with it? Always remember to be patient and kind with yourself during any process of growth or change.
Feel like you keep facing the same uphill struggle?
Sometimes you create your own problems with your thoughts and beliefs. It is these particular thoughts that hold you back, keep you stuck and consequently limit you. In my coaching practice, as well as my own personal experience, I have witnessed how a self-sabotage routine can be created with these thoughts and beliefs. If you find that you keep coming back to the same type of situation again and again, it is well worth exploring if, in fact, you are running a self-sabotage routine.
To break this self-sabotage cycle, you will need to first determine what this limiting thought or belief is. Once you have figured that out (by yourself, with the help of a friend/boss or qualified coach), consider the information below to help yourself make a lasting change.
The best approach is to replace whatever you are thinking is with a thought that is more positive. For example:
"I am not sure how to..." can turn into, "I will find the time to work out how to do this."
"I do not have the time," turns into, "If I had the time, this is what I would do."
We all have our own ways of getting our creative juices flowing. While some of us feel inspired after taking a walk in nature, others might get our biggest bursts of inspiration in the shower, or while sitting in total stillness. We asked our Thrive community to share the specific rituals that spark creativity and inspire their best ideas. Which of these will you try the next time you need a creative boost?
Establish a creative morning ritual “I start most days with a small creative ritual. Before the rest of the house wakes up, I drink my coffee, grab my art supplies and journal, and proceed to paint, collage, write, and just create something each day. For me, the key is keeping the ritual tied to a well-established habit – my morning drink — and keeping my supplies organized and visible near my kitchen table. I find that on days I take this time, I’m much happier and less stressed.” —Jill Elliott, founder of The Color Kind, Dallas, TX
The exercises help you improve the quality of your life, supports you in difficult moments and handle life’s challenging every-day situations better. It is a practical hands-on self coaching tool. Read or listen to it when you feel vulnerable, unsure of yourself, or ineffective in difficult and stressful moments. Learn how to handle your stress effectively with the help of the insights in the book. Bear in mind that there is no balance where there is stress – stress contradicts calmness and happiness. Choose which one you wish to have more of..it is up to you.
The goal of this book is to help you create new opportunities, learn new behaviors, and become the best version of yourself. It is all about practical action oriented insights, steps and behavior change.
by Benjamin P. Hardy, Author, husband, father According to the British philosopher, Alain de Botton, “Anyone who isn’t embarrassed of who they were last year probably isn’t learning enough.” How different is your life, right now, from where you were 12 months ago? If it’s quite similar, then you haven’t been learning very much. To learn, by nature, is to change and evolve. In order to change and evolve, you need to regularly create peak experiences — those moments which create deep awe, gratitude, and a shift in how you see yourself and the world. When was your last peak experience? What was the last time you flexed your courage muscles? When was the last time you tried something that might not work? If you’re ready to make wild progress during 2019, you need to make some tweaks. This isn’t anything to be upset, distraught, or frustrated about. Life is, inherently, a learning experience. Life is beautiful. You get to have fun with it. One thing that is really beautiful about moving forward intensely in your future is that, simultaneously, you change your memory about the past. The past, regardless of what it has been — great or disappointing — will change in meaning as you make new decisions in your future. Your future is flexible. Your past is also flexible. What you have is now. You get to decide what you’re going to do. You get to decide how you’re going to live. Look around… No one is stopping you. Want to make a shift? Here are 30 behaviors to get you started:
1. Wake Up Earlier “You’re more likely to act yourself into feeling, than feeling yourself into action.” —
"A truly inspiring book" I have read this book at a point in my life where I wanted something to change and I didn't know if it ever could. Through these pages I have understood how our experience in life depends 90% on us and not on external events, and that is a life changing lesson indeed." Absolutely recommended.
Suzie Doscher is a Professional Executive Coach focusing on Personal Development. Located in Zurich, Switzerland. Her approach to personal development is practical and successful. Suzie is happiest when helping people. Her vision is everyone should have access to techniques for personal growth and development. This was the motivation behind her book.